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January 20, 2015

You’re backed up – but can you restore?

You're backed up but can you restore?

The key to maintaining availability for the modern data centre is not whether you’re backed up, but how well you can recover.

Everyone loses data, all the time. The MD unthinkingly deletes an important email, or a system administrator accidentally trashes an entire server in the middle of a long night shift, or a hard drive fails. What matters then is not just whether you’re backed up, but whether you can restore the lost data.

Clients have failed audits because their backup environment was not up to scratch. Auditors are very IT-literate these days, and not prepared to take an IT manager or CIO’s word for it that systems are backed up. A lot of companies back up to tape with a retention period of 10 years – but a 10-year-old tape is very likely to fail. If the auditors ask for a restore and it doesn’t work, you have a problem.

Just as important as ensuring that data can be restored is ensuring it happens quickly. In an environment with a thousand or more users, finding a lost file or email message on tape could take months. That’s obviously not acceptable. In the always-on business, if your restore takes longer than half an hour you have an unacceptably large availability gap.

While we were previously known for our prowess in bare metal backups and restore, Aptronics has now become a leader in the virtualised data recovery environment. We have won several awards as a VMware partner, and our virtualisation expertise has contributed to our success with Veeam.

We have a very large base of customers whose IT systems are largely or completely virtualised, and both we and they have complete confidence in the Veeam Availability Suite. It has been built from the ground up for virtualised environments and can provide near-continuous data protection with a recovery time and point objective (RTPO) of 15 minutes or less. It’s also simple to use – it just works.

Aptronics has made strategic investment in sales and technical training around Veeam products, leading to us being named one of three Veeam Platinum Partners in South Africa.

In addition, the support that Veeam offers us is crucial to our business. The days are long gone when a company like ours could survive selling hardware alone. It’s important that we add value to our clients, which among other things means being able to provide excellent after-sales service and support. Veeam is an agile, responsive company – we can get attention from key decision makers 24/7 all the way up to the MD if necessary. And that’s very important to us.

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